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Influence of genetic and environmental factors on egg and clutch sizes among populations of Paratya australiensis Kemp (Decapoda: Atyidae) in␣upland rainforest streams, south-east Queensland

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Abstract

Headwater populations of the common shrimp Paratya australiensis were sampled to examine the factors influencing egg and clutch size. Much of the spatial variation in these reproductive traits was associated with differences in altitude, with upper sites having larger eggs and smaller clutches. Mean egg size at high-altitude sites was higher than that previously reported for this species. Temporal variation in egg and clutch size was also observed, with significant increases in egg size during the breeding season. At most sites, this increase was accompanied by a decrease in clutch size. The combined effect of the reciprocal patterns in egg volume and clutch size resulted in relatively little spatial and temporal variation in reproductive effort. In a field experiment, using a unique genetic marker, shrimps were translocated between two sites with significantly different egg sizes. After one generation (18 months), the mean egg size of translocated females was the same as that of females from the `source' population. In contrast, clutch size changed towards that of the resident females. This suggests that egg size is under strong genetic control, while clutch size is influenced by the environment.

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Received: 14 July 1997 / Accepted: 9 March 1998

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Hancock, M., Hughes, J. & Bunn, S. Influence of genetic and environmental factors on egg and clutch sizes among populations of Paratya australiensis Kemp (Decapoda: Atyidae) in␣upland rainforest streams, south-east Queensland. Oecologia 115, 483–491 (1998). https://doi.org/10.1007/s004420050545

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  • Key words Reproductive strategy
  • Reproductive effort
  • Larval development
  • Life history
  • Shrimps